• The boys sat in the damp grass. They were going to go home muddy and wet, probably to the scolding of their mothers, but they didn't care. The dark haired boy held out a small penknife to the other.

    “Just a little cut on your palm. It won't hurt but for a minute.”

    “Are you sure we should do this?”

    “Yeah! Don't you want to be best friends forever? We will be blood brothers.” The dark haired boy made a shallow cut in his palm. It was just deep enough to bring blood to the surface.

    The lighter haired boy took the offered knife and made a similar cut on his palm. He held his hand up so the dark haired boy could press his hand against it.

    “Swear we will be friends forever?”

    “Y-yeah. Friends forever.”

    The dark haired boy threw his head back and laughed. Slowly, the hand turned into sharp twigs, twisting around the young boy's hand. The eldritch horror was slowly shedding the human meat. The twigs and sticks it was made of slowly crept up the boy's body, enveloping it, merging the human into it.

    “Forever and ever.” The creature hissed with a thousand voices. “You will live in me forever.”